August 06, 2004 05:00 PM

CARTER CLAIM: Nick Carter spoke out this week about ex-girlfriend Paris Hilton’s mysterious bruises, which she openly displayed for photographers at Los Angeles International Airport on July 29 – one week after her breakup with the Backstreet Boy – PEOPLE reported. Although the Simple Life star, 23, and her family have been mum about exactly what happened, Carter, 24, has been put on the defensive, vigorously denying that he is responsible for her injuries. “I’ll tell you one thing: I didn’t touch her,” the singer told PEOPLE on Monday. “I’m not that kind of guy. I would never do that.”

PETERSON DELAY: Jurors in the Scott Peterson double-murder trial on Thursday morning were dismissed until Tuesday so that both sides can examine newly discovered evidence that defense attorney Mark Geragos claims could be “exculpatory” – reason enough to acquit his client. Judge Alfred Delucchi did not reveal the nature of the evidence. Michael Cardoza, a former Alameda prosecutor observing the trial, speculated that it could be a re-examination of Laci’s body and/or her son’s body, based on his conversations with the lawyers after Thursday’s session.

KOBE’S CASE: Kobe Bryant’s accuser may be having second thoughts about proceeding with the sexual assault case against the Los Angeles Lakers star, because of accidental court leaks of her name and the very real possibility that her sexual history may be entered as evidence, say her lawyers. Attorneys John Clune and Lin Wood, who represent Bryant’s alleged victim, told ABC’s Good Morning America that their client’s privacy has been violated, which may make it impossible for her to address allegations lodged against her by Bryant’s legal team.

LETOURNEAU RELEASE: Former schoolteacher Mary Kay Letourneau, 42, was released from the Washington Corrections Center for Women on Wednesday after serving seven years for having sex with one of her sixth-grade students. Vili Fualaau, now 21, recently told PEOPLE that he’d like to reunite with Letourneau but wants to take things slowly. for Letourneau, she told Seattle ABC affiliate KOMO that her focus will be on being a mother to her six children – the four she had with her ex-husband Steve Letourneau, and the girls she had with Fualaau (Audrey, 7, and Georgia, almost 6, being raised by Fualaau’s mother) – and not on reuniting with her former lover, though she still feels close to him.

HACKING CONFESSION: Mark Hacking, who was arrested Monday for killing his pregnant wife Lori, confessed the crime to his older brothers, according to their father, Douglas Hacking, who spoke to the Salt Lake Tribune. Douglas said that Mark, after being confronted with the evidence that he was involved in the murder, confessed when his brothers Scott and Lance visited him at a psychiatric ward July 24. “He decided the time was right – he had better let authorities know what happened,” Douglas Hacking said.

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